Friday, June 29, 2012

Eight Minutes with Artist Morgan Pease

Morgan Pease is a 25-year-old artist who grew up in Wisconsin, schooled here in the Twin Ports and now lives in the Twin Cities. When it was announced that Morgan Pease would be exhibiting at the Ochre Ghost this month there was a noticeable buzz. I'd seen one of his shows at the Duluth Art Institute a couple years back and looked forward to meeting him when he was back in town.

EN: What do you do for a living at this point in time? 
Morgan Pease: As of right now I am a bike mechanic (been doing that for a long time actually) for the Hub Bike Co-operative in Minneapolis. The job allows me to afford the fun stuff I like to do and gives me time when I need to really concentrate on my artwork.

EN: How did you first take an interest in the fine arts? 
MP: I grew up in a very creative family. My father is a children's singer and my mother is amazing at pretty much everything and they encouraged me to do whatever made me happy. Which to date has been a fair share of crazy adventures and the like. The community which helped is also full of a handful of very talented artists and crafts people which allowed me to see a lot of different processes from the time I was very little still to this day.

EN: What kind of training have you had? Schooling… mentors… etc. 
MP: Ahh... training. Never quite liked that word. But anyways I studied at the University of Minnesota Duluth under a bunch of wonderful professors. I definitely can attribute most of my technical skills (which I'm not sure there is much there anymore) to the professors there. Especially Ryuta Nakajima, Robert Repinski, Jen Dietrich, Cecilia Ramone, and all the friends I worked in the studio with.

EN: Can you describe your personal attitude/philosophy toward making art? (example, “Art for art’s sake” or “Art as conscience of the world” etc.) 
MP: This is a tough one for me because I feel like it changes almost every time I am creating something or thinking about creating something. For the most part though I believe as much I want to put my own thoughts and teachings into my work I feel that by the end of a series the work has taught me more then I could ever put into the work. This may be because most of the work I do is monotonous and time consuming which leaves me with plenty of time and space to bounce stuff around inside my head.

EN: What are your current projects? Are you still into triangles and movement? 
MP: My current projects right now are more based in functional creation although I have a new series entitled "16 Year Dream" which is still in the planning stages at the moment. I've been trying to figure out a couple new processes in which to work with and I'm definitely seeing some progress there. As for the triangles. I definitely will always be interested in triangles and the movement which such a simple shape can convey if used correctly. More then just triangles I have a fascination with most simple line/shape work which can convey subtle and intense motion.

EN: What does your personal art space look like? Do you have a studio in your home or elsewhere? 
MP: I do have a home studio, two actually. I've got an office for design and planning work and a wood/workshop in the basement to get my hands dirty. I've talked to a lot of artists about their decisions to have a studio at home or not and for me I just feel like it works for me. I'm a homebody so the less distance I have to go before starting something the better.

EN: What inspires you or keeps you going as an artist? 
MP: Enjoyment is the number one thing which keeps me creative. As with pretty much everything I do if I don't or can't find enjoyment in it I will simply not do it.

To see more work by Morgan Pease visit


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